Figure skating is dancing and artistry on ice.
We love tuning in during the Winter Olympics to see the competition and near-impossible feats on figure skates.
And if you've seen Disney on Ice, it's unforgettable.
It's no wonder that there are over 180,000 registered figure skaters in America, with hundreds of thousands more who do it for fun.
What is also appealing is that you do not need much to start, just the ice and a great pair of figure skates.
A common question PolyGlide synthetic ice customers ask is, "what are the best figure skates to buy?"
That's a reasonable ask. Unfortunately, competitive professional figure skates can cost upwards of $700.
So if you or your kids are beginners, or you are returning to the sport as a hobby, that price point is a bit much.
Besides, professional figure skates that your favorite wears won't turn you into a great skater. In fact, it might slow you down or make skating more difficult.
All you'll need is a reliable, high-quality pair of figure skates that won't break the bank and allows you to train like a pro-figure skater without the extra cost.
We've gathered the 10 best figure skates under $200 that should help you enjoy your time on the ice.
Our Top Picks
Best Beginner Figure Skates
Riedell Skates 110 Opal
Best Overall Figure Skates
Jackson Ultimate Mystique (with Mark II blades)
Here Are Our Picks For The 10 Best Figure Skates Under $200
These are perfect for any kind of ice (natural or synthetic) and are often available for youths, men, and women.
Best Beginner Figure Skates
If you're looking for some beginner figure skates for your kids, you can try Riedell's 10 Opal Beginner Skates.
Riedell has been a leader in ice skates for decades, and this one does not disappoint.
This sleek boot is lightweight but still provides stability that is necessary for first-time figure skaters.
The inner foam padding gives added support for hours of comfortable figure skating.
Opal also has a PVC sole that helps keeps your feet dry, which is important for performance.
Remember to follow the size guide, as this skate needs the right room in the toe box for your kids to skate comfortably.
Best Overall Figure Skates
The Ultima Mystique focuses on comfort, with padding right up to the ankles.
Its microfiber upper reduces moisture while making it easy to clean.
The PVC sole is one of the strongest available, and their patented chrome blade allows beginners to execute moves seamlessly.
Jackson makes the list again with the Artiste model.
The Artiste model focuses on style and comfort.
The long, sleek boot and stylized PVC sole help skaters stand out in any competition.
The inner boot contains memory foam, allowing it to fit into the shape of the user's foot.
Jackson figure skates also come with standard, sharpened chrome blades, allowing you to skate right out the box.
Italian-based Risport has been producing high-performance figure skates since the 1970s with a focus on style, craftsmanship, and technology.
They've integrated technology, like 3-D printing, to improve fit and comfort.
The Hamilton ice skate is made with a strong synthetic upper and reinforced padding that's perfect for hours of figure skating.
The lightweight sole also focuses on speed.
These boots are easy to break into, making them a great long-term investment.
For a budget option, you can try Amerian Athletic's ice skates.
The sleek boot and PVC upper allows for optimal performance.
The upper boot has added ankle support, which is a must for beginner skaters.
A drawback comes with the blade.
The nickel-plated blade may need occasional sharpening or replacing.
However, if you need a skate to just get started, try this one.
The Czech-made Botas Dagmar skates are designed to be durable and water-proof.
The high boot and layered leather seek to secure the ankle as it sits right at the calf.
This compensates for the extra padding you'll find on some of the models on this list.
The boot comes outfitted with stainless steel SABRINA blades, which are European certified for performance.
Despite the focus on durability, Botas skates still provide comfort for children and adults looking to learn the sport or compete.
Lake Placid Alpine takes on the traditional look with gold rivets for the laces and a solid, smooth leather upper boot and tongue.
The inside contains memory foam like the Jackson artiste, reducing the chances of tired, achy feet after hours of figure skating.
It has a water-resistant sole to prevent moisture buildup, common when skating. The stainless steel blades also withstand figure skating on natural or synthetic ice
For a mid-tier priced skate, Riedell Pearl 114 is an excellent option.
The special grey PVC sole and pink inner lining give it a fresh, stylish look when hitting the ice.
But it's not all about style.
The 114's have a higher toe box for added comfort and their patented Dri-Lex lining to prevent added moisture.
The stainless steel blade allows for maximum speed and power when executing your favorite moves.
The Glacier by Jackson allows for hours of recreational or figure skating with a traditional design.
The boot has Suedine lining that provides both strong support and comfort.
The felt-backed tongue and brown PVC outsole make this skate easy to maintain.
The all-purpose nickel blade provides a nice finish to this conventional skate.
A structurally sound skate with a great look for any skater.
Roces is great for figure skaters who want an out-of-the-box design but the same performance.
This funky plaid pattern and black laces allow girls to add some style points while learning the basics of figure skating.
The padded footbed and reinforced upper provides both support and comfort.
The carbon steel blade is durable, making the skate useful for figure skating or recreational skating.
The synthetic upper may attract more moisture than you'd like, but it's still a great entry-level skate.
Figure Skate Buyer's Guide
Figure Skates vs. Recreational Ice Skates
While searching for the best figure skates, you have to remember this important fact: All ice skates are not created equal.
There are big, bulky ice skates that are perfect for hockey.
These have hard, carbon fiber boots to protect the feet from wayward hockey sticks and flying pucks.
Figure skates are sleeker, smoother leather boots - usually white or black - that are great for movement and stability.
The goal is to make sure you take off and land safely, performing flips, loops, and axels.
Figure skates can also be confused with recreational ice skates, the type you pull out of the closet to hit Rockefeller Rink when it opens during the Holidays.
In fact, they tend to look the same.
Here's what you need to look for in figure skates:
The Figure Skate Boot
Figure skating boots are much stiffer and heavier than recreational ice skates.
The goal is to protect the ankles and feet when landing.
The stiffer the boot, the more you can attempt (and often more expensive).
There is also extra padding to reduce shock absorption.
Recreational skates are softer, lighter, and break in easily.
They often look like figure skates but lack the additional padding.
Toe picks are the serrated edges at the front of the blade.
The pick helps figure skaters dig into the surface before exploding into a jump, pivot, or spin.
Figure skates can have sharper, more defined skates.
With recreational ice skates, toe picks feel like an afterthought.
They are smaller and smoother, allowing for the occasional trick to impress your friends.
Figure Skate Blades
Competitive figure skating blades are often sold separately from the boot.
This allows the skater to find a blade that fits their style.
With ice skates below $200, the blades are often standard steel, chrome, or nickel-plated.
You want to look for chrome or steel blades that will last longer and requires fewer trips to get them sharpened.
Your ice skates should feel snug without feeling too tight.
Figure skate sizes often differ by brand, with brands between one to one-and-a-half sizes smaller than regular shoe sizes.
Skates also have a width size that helps you have a comfortable shoe box. Sizes can range from AAAA to C.
In other words, you can get the right size but the wrong width.
Use this simple method to size skates before placing your order.
Get ready to skate
Choosing a skate can feel confusing.
There are several choices on the market at various price levels.
The best figure skates under $200 should have maximum performance at an attractive price.
Focus on fit, comfort, and a high-quality blade.
As you or your child progresses in the sport, you'll undoubtedly upgrade to a competitive-level skate.
Until then, these choices will perform well on any surface.
You may even want to try our home synthetic ice surface to get in some extra practice between events!
Keep on Skating!
Jim Loughran, PolyGlide Ice